Noel Coughlan passed away after a long battle with cancer on January 28. He is survived by a wife, Ellen and four wonderful children, ages seven, 12, 14 and 19 who now face enormous medical expenses and hardship.
The friends of the Coughlan family have set up a benefit to help defray those expenses for the family. The benefit will be held on April 10 at Rory Dolan’s in Yonkers from 2 p.m. until late, with live music and food all day.
Coughlin touched all in his 51 years, and he lived life to its fullest with his passions his family, his love of golf and all things GAA and Offaly.
Noel was born in on Christmas Day in 1959, in Cloghan, Co. Offaly and came from a long line of well known Gaelic footballers who represented the county.
Back surgery put an end to his athletic career when he had three discs fused in 1980. New York called in 1984 and he headed for the Big Apple to his best friend Kevin Whelehan in August of that year.
He continued his love of Gaelic games by following the games in Gaelic Park and watching the games from Ireland.
The following year was a huge one as he met his future wife Ellen in the Bronx that year.
Work wise the late eighties introduced Noel to local Union 18A. He was a proud member and began with the union in 1987. He got hurt in November of 1992 and was out of work until 1998, but returned to 18A at that point.
Life dealt the Coughlan family a severe blow in April of 2000, as Noel was diagnosed with stomach cancer and had part of his stomach removed. He was strong in his belief that he would fight it, and indeed was the most determined person each day to keep striving forward.
He went back to work and from a personal standpoint joined the Rockland GAA club in 2003 when son Chris became involved with the club’s under-8s. He was immediately hooked. When his son Brian was kicking the ball around at six, Noel remarked to a friend, “I can’t wait until he is playing with the under-16s.”
But 2008 brought a new battle to Noel’s door. He was diagnosed with metastic colon cancer in March and fought it with a huge heart.
His many friends are asking for support for the family. Call Trisha Shalvey at 646-542-2815 or Pat Yorke at 347-539-6525 for information.